US MERA Professional Regulation Committee – June 2015
US Midwifery Education, Regulation, and Association (US MERA) organizations support legislative language stating that by 2020, all new applicants for midwifery licensure must have successfully completed an educational program or pathway accredited by an organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) or obtained the Midwifery Bridge Certificate. All applicants for licensure must pass a national midwifery certification examination offered as part of a National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) accredited credentialing program, as well as hold a CPM, Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM) and/or Certified Midwife (CM) credential.
In 2014, US MERA approved this resolution to support new legislation for the licensure of CPMs in states that do not currently license CPMs. The US MERA Professional Regulation Committee, made up of representatives of US MERA organizations, was then charged with developing legislative language regarding the licensure of CPMs in states proposing new licensure bills. At this time, this language does not apply to states where there are existing statutes for CPM licensure.
At the same time, the US MERA Legislative Committee began the development of a consensus statement outlining principles for model midwifery legislation and regulation using the Delphi research process. The consensus statement is anticipated to be made available in mid-summer, 2015, and will serve as a complementary document to the statement on legislative language.
US MERA encourages the inclusion of the following two statements in legislative language for states developing licensure statutes for CPMs:
- For the licensure of CPMs who obtain certification after January 1, 2020, in states with new licensure laws, all applicants for licensure will be required to have completed an educational program or pathway accredited by the Midwifery Education Accreditation Council (MEAC) and obtained the CPM credential.
- For CPMs who obtained certification through an educational pathway not accredited by MEAC:
- a. CPMs certified before January 1, 2020, through a non-accredited pathway will be required to obtain the Midwifery Bridge Certificate issued by the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM) in order to apply for licensure in states using the US MERA language for licensure, or
- b. CPMs who have maintained licensure in a state that does not require an accredited education may obtain the Midwifery Bridge Certificate regardless of the date of their certification in order to apply for licensure in a state that includes the US MERA language.
The Midwifery Bridge Certificate, issued by NARM, will be based on the completion of 50 hours of accredited continuing education specific to content in emergency skills for pregnancy and birth, and newborn care, along with other midwifery topics addressing the core competencies of the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM). The Midwifery Bridge Certificate is expected to be implemented by NARM during the summer of 2015. Please watch for more specifics about implementation of the Certificate at www.narm.org.
For a pdf of this document, click here: Statement on the Licensure of Certified Professional Midwives